Energy Victory: Winning the War on Terror by Breaking Free of Oil


In this compelling argument for a new direction in US energy policy, world-renowned engineer and best-selling author Robert Zubrin lays out a bold plan for breaking the economic stranglehold that the OPEC oil cartel has on our country and the world. Zubrin presents persuasive evidence that our decades-long relationship with OPEC has resulted in the looting of our economy, the corruption of our political system, and now the funding and protection of terrorist regimes and movements that are committed to our ...
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In this compelling argument for a new direction in US energy policy, world-renowned engineer and best-selling author Robert Zubrin lays out a bold plan for breaking the economic stranglehold that the OPEC oil cartel has on our country and the world. Zubrin presents persuasive evidence that our decades-long relationship with OPEC has resulted in the looting of our economy, the corruption of our political system, and now the funding and protection of terrorist regimes and movements that are committed to our destruction. Debunking the false solutions and myths that have deterred us from taking necessary action, Zubrin exposes the fakery that has allowed many politicians--including current US president George W. Bush--to posture that they are acting to resolve this problem while actually doing nothing significant toward that goal.

Zubrin's plan is straightforward and practical. He argues that if Congress passed a law requiring that all new cars sold in the USA be flex-fueled--that is, able to run on any combination of gasoline or alcohol fuels--this one action would destroy the monopoly that the oil cartel has maintained on the globe's transportation fuel supply, opening it up to competition from alcohol fuels produced by farmers worldwide. According to Zubrin's estimates, within three years of enactment, such a regulation would put 50 million cars on the road in the USA capable of running on high-alcohol fuels, and at least an equal number overseas. He further advocates tariff policies favoring alcohol over petroleum imports.

Energy Victory shows how we could be using fuel dollars that are now being sent to countries with ties to terrorism to help farmers here and abroad,boosting our own economy and funding world development. Furthermore, by switching to alcohol fuels, which pollute less than gasoline and are made from plants that draw carbon dioxide from the air, this plan will facilitate the worldwide economic growth required to eliminate global poverty without the fear of greenhouse warming. Energy Victory offers an exciting vision for a dynamic, new energy policy, which will not only go a long way toward safeguarding homeland security in the future but will also provide solutions for global warming and Third World development.
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What People Are Saying

Clifford D. May
"Americans are buying ammunition for their enemies every time they buy gas. Energy security is the way out of this dilemma and Dr. Zubrin has a plan to achieve it."--(Clifford D. May, Syndicated Columnist, President, Foundation for the Defense of Democracies)
James Woolsey
"Robert Zubrin pulls no punches and moves effortlessly from a fascinating oil-centered take on WW II to making the mathematics of oil alternatives intelligible to lay readers. Oil and hydrogen take huge hits and alcohol fuels win big. Don't miss this one."--(James Woolsey, former Director, Central Intelligence Agency)
Gal Luft
"To win the war on terror, we need to remove the yoke of our oil dependence and cut the flow of petrodollars to regimes that spread radical Islam. Energy Victory is a bold, yet realistic plan to do just that. It is a vitally important book about the most critical issue we face today."--(Dr. Gal Luft, Executive Director, Institute for the Analysis of Global Security)
James P. Clark
"In Energy Victory, Zubrin supplies a forceful plan to finally break oil's global stranglehold and seriously address world development. This is something we've really needed for some time. Washington should sit up and take notice."--(James P. Clark, Chairman, World Technology Network)
George Weigel
"Americans are finally becoming aware that energy isn't just an economic or environmental issue; it's a grave national security issue. It's long past time to stop bankrolling terrorism by transferring billions of dollars to unstable and corrupt regimes that just happen to be sitting on top of most of the world's petroleum. Energy Victory is an important, timely contribution to the debate over breaking the oil habit and achieving energy security."--(George Weigel, Senior Fellow, Ethics and Public Policy Center; Author, Witness to Hope)
Anne Korin
"Robert Zubrin's Energy Victory highlights fuel choice in the transportation sector as a real world option and imperative to reducing America's dependence on the petrostates that fund radical Islam. It is a compelling read."--(Anne Korin, Executive Director, Set America Free Coalition; Editor, Energy Security)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781591027072
  • Publisher: Prometheus Books
  • Publication date: 3/24/2009
  • Pages: 352
  • Sales rank: 1,572,666
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Robert Zubrin (Indian Hills, CO) is president of Pioneer Astronautics and also president of the Mars Society. For many years he worked as a senior engineer for Lockheed Martin. In addition, he is the author of the critically acclaimed nonfiction books The Case for Mars, Entering Space, Mars on Earth; the science fiction novels The Holy Land and First Landing; and articles in Scientific American, The New Atlantis, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Mechanical Engineering, and The American Enterprise. He has appeared on major media including CNN, CSPAN, the BBC, the Discovery Channel, NBC, ABC, and NPR.
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Sort by: Showing all of 8 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 20, 2008

    A methanol solution to the energy crisis

    Dr. Zubrin documents how flex fuel vehicles burning methanol (CH3OH) or ethanol (C2H5OH) can save the USA more than a 10 trillion dollars in 5 years of implementing his plan on page 145. On page 94 he discusses how farm waste product such as stems, roots and leaves can be used to make methanol. Coal could be converted to methanol - pg 96. The USA has the world's biggest coal reserves so this technique alone would almost free us from OPEC and the Saudi Royals. He describes how methanol can be made from garbage such as sawdust and rice bran on pg 153 plastics, synthetic fabrics, yard waste, paper, rubber tires, cardboard, styrofoam, glue, natural fibers like cotton and linen, etc. We could greatly reduce the amount of stuff going into our land fills if we cooked most of it into methanol. Building cars that can burn any mixture of gasoline and methanol would cost $100 extra for improved materials in the fuel line. On page 107 he discusses why this system is better for the environment. On page 126 to 135 he debunks the claims that alcohol fuels cost more oil to create than what they save and documents how these exploded theories keep getting air time in the big media. On page 137 he talks about methanol and how it can help poor farmers through out the world rather than giving our billions to OPEC. To us a $140 / barrel of oil is inconvenient, but to a poor 3rd world farmer trying to get his crop to market it is a impossibly cruel tax. Food is rotting on the field for lack of money to buy gasoline to bring it to market.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 6, 2008

    To Process-Chemical-Engineer reviewer

    Did you actually read the book, or are you part of the problem Zubrin exposes? (Ie are you a farm (ethanol), big oil, or Saudi Arabian lobbyist?) Zubrin's solution is methanol (wood alcohol), made from sources ethanol (grain alcohol) can't be made from, including coal, natural gas, human and animal wastes, ordinary garbage, all plant materials (ie species now considered weeds), and many industrial by-products now considered noxious pollutants. Methanol could economically replace ALL gasoline and diesel within 10 years, and the only impact on the price of food would be its reduction as the price of the fuel used to grow and transport it dropped. In fact, an immediate move towards methanol would force the Saudi's to drop the price of oil to $50 or less, probably within 3 years. That's what competition does, of which there's no meaningful amount in the transportation fuel market and can't be for 15+ years, based on current technologies that exclude methanol. And to answer the unstated canard you would have used had you known I would write this answer to your review, methanol is not a meaningful polluter (especially compared to what it would replace, oil), as proven by the hundreds of millions of gallons of methanol INTENTIONALLY released into the environment every year via windshield washer fluid, of which methanol was the main component until very recently. Methanol was chosen because, as alcohol, it's food for microorganisms and therefore is quickly broken down in the environment. (And that's VERY unlike MTBE, made from methanol and held up by the disingenuous as proof methanol is a polluter. MTBE is a completely different chemical, and does NOT break down easily in the environment, so it has caused problems.) Your ¿choice¿ between OPEC oil and world starvation is a straw man. The real choice is between OPEC oil and unutilized resources abundantly found in practically every country in the world, including the US.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 15, 2008

    Nice idea but not for this world

    It needs not commenting from me that the current policy for energy crops has risen prices for starches and oils in levels that should create scepticism to us. What would you choose, global hunger or to depend on OPEC? The solution to energy issue is to upgrade the renewable sources technology and to economize as much as possible (house insulation, hybrid vehicles, mass transit, etc.)

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 8, 2008

    A blueprint for indepndence that only needs political will to succeed.

    ¿Are we still a nation of pioneers? Do we choose to make the efforts required to continue as the vanguard of human progress, a people of the future, or will we allow ourselves to be a people of the past, one whose accomplishments are celebrated only in museums?¿ so wrote Robert Zubrin from the preface to his first book ¿The Case for Mars¿, reminding Americans¿ that their nation achieved greatness because they, as a people, always sought the future. And in their seeking they found a way free of control and of any check against their collective dreams for themselves and their children¿s children. In establishing the American age, they would find that national greatness comes from a shared vision as a people for a future lived in freedom, and not just from some happenstance or whim of nature. Often as a nation we have aimed high and missed the mark, but never have we been a people to settle, to content ourselves with going along for the ride. As ¿The Case for Mars¿ asks the question of why we are content to dabble in space post-Apollo, Zubrin¿s latest action inspiring book, ¿Energy Victory¿ asks the resounding question of the American age - why has America remained a contented captive of the Arab Petroleum cartel? And why does America continue to help cultivate, finance and shelter the benefactors of the very forces that we commit our young men and women in the armed services to fight in a struggle of ¿kill or be killed?¿ In ¿Energy Victory,¿ Zubrin details not only a plan for energy independence, but demonstrates conclusively the absurdity of our present national energy policy. From pointing out the role of Saudi Arabia in spreading worldwide the fanatic Islamic Wahhabi worldview and that worldviews direct ties to our current ¿terror war,¿ to the use of petroleum wealth in buying influence in the corridors of Washington, our national energy policy is seriously missing the mark of American national interest. For anyone still doubting that Islamic terrorism is a grave threat because of the vast wealth of the oil Sheiks being used to finance it, and the influence that their wealth buys in the corridors of power in the world¿s remaining ¿superpower,¿ Zubrin¿s first sixty pages are conclusive for all but those few still awaiting their second cup of Kool-Aid. Yet ¿Energy Victory¿ goes beyond just building the case about an oil and Islamic fanaticism co-dependency, but sets an ambitious strategic goal of destroying the OPEC cartel and creating an energy independent America that plays straight to our nation¿s natural resource strengths. Based on Nineteenth century technology and chemistry that is easily understood with no more than a high school chemistry background he argues that to ¿annihilate the oil cartel, we need to switch the world to a different fuel.¿ In the chapter ¿Changing the Energy Trump Suit,¿ Zubrin acknowledges that currently oil is the fuel with the trump role and the United States is by far the worst loser in the energy game with oil as the trump ¿card.¿ Yet the U.S. energy position changes dramatically when the trump fuel cards are changed to one of the world¿s other major energy resources of coal, natural gas, or biomass. To make that change in the trump card the U.S. would need to convert coal, natural gas, and biomass into their ¿energy equivalent in usable liquid fuels,¿ or simply ¿all we need to do is make alcohol,¿ and in point of fact the simplest alcohols ¿ ethanol and methanol. And while the energy densities, as Zubrin points out, of the alcohols are not that of petroleum based liquid fuels the current price points of gasoline and other fuels make alcohols very attractive and doable, while the strategic imperative of breaking the back of terror¿s financiers makes an alcohol based energy source a necessity. The technologies exist today, and have for the last 30 plus years, to convert our automobile production to 100% flex-fuel internal combustion, meaning an internal engine monitoring that burns

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 10, 2007

    A book dense with ideas and facts

    A powerful book which suggests and documents a path for energy independence. I believe it will define the energy debate from this time forward. Dr. Zubrin does not pull any punches. From criticisms of the current administration's energy policy to arguments against the 'hydrogen economy' and global warming there is something to offend almost every power group in Washington. The history of Brazil and how it has achieved energy independence is especially interesting.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 17, 2007

    A clear and decisive plan for winning the war on terror

    Robert Zubrin has written a masterful exposé of the connection between our global oil economy and Islamic terrorism. Energy Victory gives us a clear and decisive plan for winning the war on terror by freeing the world from oil dependence¿using existing technology and our own natural resources. A simple mandate¿a single act of Congress¿could shift the world economy from oil to alcohol fuels within a decade. Every American should read this book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 17, 2007

    A reviewer

    Zubrin forcefully postulates that a switch to ethanol and methanol fuel, replacing Mideast Oil, particularly from the Saudis, is America's answer to true Energy Independence. Starting with forced conversions to flex fuel for all new vehicles sold in the U.S.--doubly more ambitious than the Administration's exhortations to the Big Three Automakers that half their annual production be flex-fuel- capable by 2012--alcohol fuels based on flex-ubiquity, Zubrin contends, would quickly supplant petroleum as the dominant fuel source. Using a methodical historical narrative, Zubrin traces the flow of petrodollars from the U.S. to Osama Bin Laden. A petro-feed to hatred of the West, the route carries us through the Saudi Royal Family's support of radical Islam, its strict fundamentalist teachings and zealotry traced to Ibn Abdul Wahhab and Bin Laden. 7.5 million barrels a day of alcohol fuels, a tough but attainable goal, is the counter balance that leads us to Zubrin's Energy Victory. Laced with facts and figures and some easy math, it's sure to devolve to the policy points of some presidential candidate.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 19, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

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